Accent, which comes from the Latin accentus, is the articulation of the voice that allows highlighting, through pronunciation, a syllable of a word. The distinction is achieved through the use of a higher tone or a higher intensity.
There are different types of accent, such as the prosodic accent or the musical accent. In this case we are going to focus on the emphatic accent, which is also known as a diacritical accent.
This accent allows to differentiate between two words through pronunciation and implies, in writing, the use of a tilde (an oblique line). In this way, a distinction is made between a tonic syllable and an unstressed syllable that contributes to the differentiation of two meanings.
Take the case of the / him. When this monosyllable is written without a tilde, it is an article: “The car broke down. ” Instead, if the emphatic accent is used, the word becomes a personal pronoun: “He already knows that his doors are open in this company. ”
The emphatic accent is also used in other monosyllabic words, as is (“My wife is gone” / “I swear I do not know”) and you (“I’ll call you later” / “Today I’m going to have tea with my grandmother ”).
More examples that we can find regarding the use or not of the emphatic accent are the following:
-More and more. The first word works as an adversative type conjunction while the second is an adverb of quantity. Examples of sentences of both would be the following: “I want to go on that trip but my finances do not allow it” and “I ate much more than I should”.
-Yes and yes. The first term is a conditional conjunction and the second becomes an affirmative adverb. In this way, they are used in this way: “If you come to my house to do homework, tomorrow I will accompany you to play a bike ride” and “When I asked him if he wanted to marry me, he answered with a resounding yes”.
-I know and I know. The first option is a personal pronoun and the second option is a verb form of the first person singular. Examples are these: “He fell asleep during the car ride” and “I don’t know what you’re talking about, I have nothing to do with that matter.”
In addition to all the data presented, we can not ignore the fact that there are others that are also worth knowing about the emphatic accent, such as the following:
-It is very common to use it to convert a tonic word into an atonic.
-It can be found very frequently in what are journalistic or political speeches and exhibitions.
The exclamatory pronouns and interrogative pronouns, on the other hand, carry strong stress to differentiate themselves from the conjunctions and relative pronouns: “How cold it is here!” / “I think you will like this”; “What is your name?” / “No player is as skilled as Messi”; “Who will come to eat?” / “They are the boys I told you about last night. ”